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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Diverse Tracks, A Very "Live" Sound & and Amazing Singer- 1 of the Best CDs of the Year !
Ledisi hits it out of the park with this CD ! The range of tracks and diversity of vibes on this CD is amazing. IF you like R&B, Hip-Hop, Rock/Blues, a Motown sound, or even slow jams, this CD has it ALL ! IF you have ever seen Ledisi Live, this CD captures the energy and vibe of her live concert. Each track sounds great, with real instruments and Ledisi's voice in top...
Published on August 18, 2009 by Gary Berman

versus
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ledisi Turned Loose....
Four albums in and Ledisi is doing what she does best, changing. Through Soul Singer to Lost & Found, the projects are as varied as the artist herself. Turn Me Loose is another shining example of the amalgamation that Ledisi brings to the world of Jazz and R&B. Vocally she has never been stronger, she is a powerhouse on tracks 1-14, tackling each song like she were...
Published on August 25, 2009 by Jivon Lee Jackson


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Diverse Tracks, A Very "Live" Sound & and Amazing Singer- 1 of the Best CDs of the Year !, August 18, 2009
This review is from: Turn Me Loose [CD/DVD] (Audio CD)
Ledisi hits it out of the park with this CD ! The range of tracks and diversity of vibes on this CD is amazing. IF you like R&B, Hip-Hop, Rock/Blues, a Motown sound, or even slow jams, this CD has it ALL ! IF you have ever seen Ledisi Live, this CD captures the energy and vibe of her live concert. Each track sounds great, with real instruments and Ledisi's voice in top form on every track, but its the Rock edged Blues tunes that really blew me away. Her song "Knockin" is just hard core Blues/Rock, and I had never heard her sing this type of song before. Also her remake of " Them Changes " was another fave....kinda reminds me of Tina Turner with her power and soul on that song. The opening track "Runnin" with its head bopping beat, and Ledisi's strong and soulful voice gives you a taste of what you are in for on the rest of the CD. I wish that track was longer ! Other Stand Outs are "Higher the This" which sounds similiar to something that Mary J Blige would sing. There are a few mid tempo groove tracks, like "Alone", " Lover Never Changes", " Please Stay", & " Say No" . The song "Trippin" has a nice Reggae vibe to it. Also a really nice slow ballad " The Answer to Why" has some great orchestration, and sounds like it could be on the soundtrack for a movie. This CD has it ALL, and is sure to be one of the hottest CDs of the Year !
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Follow-up Album to LOST & FOUND; 4 stars, August 21, 2009
This review is from: Turn Me Loose (Audio CD)
Ledisi was practically an unknown artist until her 2007 album Lost & Found was nominated for two Grammy awards (Best New Artist, Best R&B Album). While she failed to win, the exposure certainly heightened her profile as an R&B singer. Calling Ledisi's second 'high profile' album 'anticipated' might be a bit of an overstatement, particularly given this stagnant economy in the music business, but it is certainly big for the previously unknown singer. LOST & FOUND was a fine album by all means, though it was "quieter" than the funkier Turn Me Loose, which shows a more ignited, even more vocally viable Ledisi. With this electrifying combination, TURN ME LOOSE is easily one of the best R&B albums of 2009, right up there with the likes Maxwell's BLACKsummers'night and most likely Whitney Houston's forthcoming I Look to You.

The album opens up with the brief, but funky "Runnin'" in which Ledisi instantly shows off her pipes. The songwriting is solid as is the production - and instant difference and departure from LOST & FOUND. "Everything Changes" keeps up the pace, adding funky horns to the mix. The production is still funkier than anything appearing on LOST & FOUND, marking a departure and experimentation on Ledisi's part. As always, the starlet sings rings around a number of her contemporaries. "Turn Me Loose", the title track is one of the funkiest of the album, hearkening old school 1960s/70s soul, though not sounding like an anachronism (aka an outdated throwback). Sure, "Turn Me Loose" would only do well on Adult R&B/Adult Contemporary radio as opposed to pop stations, but that certainly doesn't downgrade the freshness or the grand quality of this track.

As for "Higher Than This", it isn't only adult R&B at its finest, it also lays well for the hip-hop circuit with slightly fresher, more contemporary production than say "Turn Me Loose". No, it isn't the overt "hip-hop" that has pervaded radio (I mean that respectfully of course), but it does sound more directed toward a slightly younger audience - particularly in comparison to say "Alright" from Lost & Found. Ledisi sings exceptionally here, giving one of her most poignant, strong performances of TURN ME LOOSE. "Higher Than This" is just a well written, R&B song. "Alone" proves to be as well written as everything else showcasing Ledisi's prodigious pipes and more sound production work. "Love Never Changes" features a chord-progression the likes of an Al Green southern-styled soul tune. Again, it is another solid listen and nowhere near being filler.

Despite the solidity of tunes like "Alone" or "Love Never Changes" and the soulful "Stay" that would've been perfect on Solange's Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams, it is a track like the should-of-been-first-single "Knockin'" that truly steals the show. I have never heard Ledisi quite as energized or as contemporary on this R&B-rocker. I think to myself as a music enthusiast, 'why would you choose the good, but "been-there-done-that" 'Goin' Thru Changes' over such a kick-butt track as "Knockin'? The production is the best of the entire album, the background vocals during the refrain are an exceptional touch, and Ledisi sounds awesome. 5 star track, ladies and gentlemen.

"Say No" may not be equal to the greatness of "Knockin'", but it lays as well as everything does for the most part on TURN ME LOOSE. "Goin' Thru Changes" is good (not diminishing it), though I think adult R&B fans have heard this type of song more than once, which takes away from it slightly. It was a good choice for a first single, but it isn't necessarily better than "Alright" or "Think of You" from LOST & FOUND. Furthermore, as mentioned earlier, I believe "Knockin'" easily 'beasts' a track like "Goin' Thru Changes".

"I Need Love" finds Ledisi again over a more contemporary backdrop with swirling synths and "big drums". Wisely, the drums don't grow as big as say a Ryan Tedder production (known for 'big' drums) where it might have sounded a bit ill-fitting with Ledisi. "I Need Love" isn't the best of TURN ME LOOSE, but it also isn't filler. "Trippin'" similarly isn't the best of TURN ME LOOSE, but it is certainly interesting if nothing else. The production is placed somewhere between the contemporary and a throwback to classic soul. "The Answer To Why" returns Ledisi back to more adult-contemporary helmed R&B, supported by acoustic guitar and strings. Again, I don't connect with "The Answer To Why" as much as the very best of the album, but I do think Ledisi sounds great. The album closes "funkily" with the fantastic "Them Changes", which proves to be worth the wait. A track like "Them Changes" could have easily appeared on a Prince, Chaka Khan, or Aretha Franklin album.

Overall, TURN ME LOOSE is a great album. There is very little to criticize. The biggest thing is that Ledisi is better when she is funky and allowed to show off her prodigious vocals. 4 stars; I hope that Ledisi receives a Grammy nomination once again.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Album - Even Better Live!, August 18, 2009
By 
Blknomad2k (Upper Marlboro, MD) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Turn Me Loose (MP3 Music)
I purchased Turn Me Loose earlier today and was immediately hooked. Alone, Knockin' and Goin' Thru Changes alone made the album worth the money. Ledisi really cranked it up a notch on this album. There are jams to rock out to as well as rock with your boo.

As an added bonus, Ledisi held an album release performance at DC's National Harbour today. The show was delayed over an hour due to some rain; however, once the rain stopped Ledisi turned it out. She ripped through her latest CD and had us singing the words like the album had been out for weeks instead of hours. Not to mention she gave us a few bonus songs from her last album.

This sista is the real deal on recordings and in person. Check her out!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Diverse Tracks, A Very "Live" Sound & and Amazing Singer- 1 of the Best CDs of the Year !, August 18, 2009
This review is from: Turn Me Loose (Audio CD)
Ledisi hits it out of the park with this CD ! The range of tracks and diversity of vibes on this CD is amazing. IF you like R&B, Hip-Hop, Rock/Blues, a Motown sound, or even slow jams, this CD has it ALL ! IF you have ever seen Ledisi Live, this CD captures the energy and vibe of her live concert. Each track sounds great, with real instruments and Ledisi's voice in top form on every track, but its the Rock edged Blues tunes that really blew me away. Her song "Knockin" is just hard core Blues/Rock, and I had never heard her sing this type of song before. Also her remake of " Them Changes " was another fave....kinda reminds me of Tina Turner with her power and soul on that song. The opening track "Runnin" with its head bopping beat, and Ledisi's strong and soulful voice gives you a taste of what you are in for on the rest of the CD. I wish that track was longer ! Other Stand Outs are "Higher the This" which sounds similiar to something that Mary J Blige would sing. There are a few mid tempo groove tracks, like "Alone", " Lover Never Changes", " Please Stay", & " Say No" . The song "Trippin" has a nice Reggae vibe to it. Also a really nice slow ballad " The Answer to Why" has some great orchestration, and sounds like it could be on the soundtrack for a movie. This CD has it ALL, and is sure to be one of the hottest CDs of the Year !
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ever-changing and bubbling with welcome surprise, August 18, 2009
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This review is from: Turn Me Loose [CD/DVD] (Audio CD)
Ledisi, the once independent little engine that could, keeps going and going. Her growth in music is ever-changing and bubbling with welcome surprise. Now a major player in the game, "Turn Me Loose" is her first collaboration with a varied group of talented and successful producers (Raphael Saadiq, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Chief XCel, Chucky Thompson, Rex Rideout). They bring "it" (their creative force) to further enhance the musicianship of Ledisi. This project demonstrates that Ledisi is not just a Gospel, Jazz, R&B or Pop artist. In truth, she is a singer/song writer who encompasses all genres.
Rather than singling out a particular favorite track of mine on this grade "A" CD,
I will just close in saying I love the whole thing from its' slamming start to its' engaging finish.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Project!!!!, August 24, 2009
This review is from: Turn Me Loose [CD/DVD] (Audio CD)
I don't write reviews after purchasing cds, I give reviews by word of mouth (LOL). However, I felt compelled to write this review. I am an "Old School" music istener and my favorite genres are R&B,Soul and Jazz. I have been waiting so long for an artist to return to these genres of music that I grew up on (the Grown and Sexy). Turn Me Loose is it!!!! This cd encompasses everything I have been missing in music, and she also keeps it modern. The production is superb, the lyrics are well-written and you can hear that a lot of thought went into this project before its release. Hearing a live band on a cd vs. studio sounds is refreshing. My intent is not to denigrate other artists, as there are many great artists out today. However, each of us has our own style.

Thank God Verve Records listened to this young lady and brought her to the forefront for music listeners such as myself. This cd is reminiscent of her live shows, simply amazing!

I hope she deservingly wins a Grammy for this project in 2010!!!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ledisi Turned Loose...., August 25, 2009
By 
Jivon Lee Jackson (Fort Washington, Maryland USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Turn Me Loose (Audio CD)
Four albums in and Ledisi is doing what she does best, changing. Through Soul Singer to Lost & Found, the projects are as varied as the artist herself. Turn Me Loose is another shining example of the amalgamation that Ledisi brings to the world of Jazz and R&B. Vocally she has never been stronger, she is a powerhouse on tracks 1-14, tackling each song like she were climbing mountain. Alone, Everything Changes, Say No, Knocking, Gone Through Changes, and the rhythmically contemporary I Need Love, are examples of this. Turn Me Loose is definitely more of melting pot of sounds that may through the listener initially, however after a few listens you will appreciate what Ledisi is going for. Keep on changing Ledisi, and keep on sharing those changes with music lovers...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An awesome album by Ledisi, August 31, 2009
This review is from: Turn Me Loose [CD/DVD] (Audio CD)
I have been a fan of Ledisi's for about 10 years now, and I always look forward to what she is going to bring, especially in concert. After a well received major label debut "Lost and Found", she has returned with a cd that defies category, flexes her artistic muscles, and stretches her musically. This is in no way a commercial release, which is the best part, although a few songs could easily find their way to the best of radio programming. The cd is much more raw than her previous effort, while exploring Funk, Blues, Rock, Hip Hop, and R&B...all with great results. Songs such as "Everything Changes", "Turn Me Loose", Them Changes", "The Answer to Why", and "Please Stay", all reflect the complexity and realness of the porject. Ledisi's voice is in fine shape, and almost comes close to her live show, but you really have to see her in concert to get the full effect, she is an artist in every form of the word. Ledisi is not a fly-by-night, one dimensional, half-baked talent. She is an artist who has put in time to learn her craft, comes from a place musically that allows her to explore various genres, and is a true live performer who ignites a stage just with the music alone (no props needed). I could go on, but you just have to check out all her work, and see her live to understand. Please get this one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Musical Journey, August 26, 2009
By 
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This review is from: Turn Me Loose [CD/DVD] (Audio CD)
TML is an homage to the way music people listened to music back in the day, before Clear Channel and other huge radio conglomerates decided that folks could only digest one type of music at a time. It harkens to a period of time when people could listen to Sly & the Family Stone, Tina Turner, the Rolling Stones, James Brown, the Beatles, Motown and Dionne Warwick on the same station and love each song.

We've been so programmed to only listen to certain genres of music and for me, "Turn Me Loose" is a breath of fresh air. It's bold, yet sensitive, in your face and chill, funky and poppy, old school and fresh/new. It's the way we are as humans beings in terms of how we feel at any given time, on any given day. The musicianship, production and flow are stellar. The singing, omg! Ledisi is singing like she sings in her live sets and it's electric and exciting.

I absolutely love this CD and highly recommend it to anyone who loves music and is open to change...
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have done with a few `changes'..., February 23, 2010
By 
Andrew Ellington (I'm kind of everywhere) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Turn Me Loose (Audio CD)
I blind purchased `Turn Me Loose' based on some recommendations and reviews that made me feel as though this was going to be an album I'd really appreciate. I have never listened to Ledisi before this. In fact, I had never even heard of her. After listening to this album a few times I must say that, while I really like her voice and her style, there is one major flaw on this album that makes it hard for me to praise it.

It's repetitious to a fault.

While most of the tracks on `Turn Me Loose' are roughly 4-minutes, the repetitious nature of the lyrics and the musical arrangements can make the songs feel like they drag on for 7 or 8 minutes. I mean, she's even redundant when it comes to her song titles (Everything Changes, Goin' Thru Changes, The Changes, Love Never Changes). Also, is it just me or do a lot of these songs feel reminiscent of early Destiny's Child?

For me, the album opens and closes flawlessly. `Runnin' is impeccable and completely engaging. I love the rocker edge, and the Chaka Khan comparisons are appropriate, but not definitive (which is a nice way of saying that she embellishes her influences, not mimics them). `Them Changes' deals well with the repetition (I, for one, hate the fact that the best song on the album, `Runnin', is also the shortest, at just over 2-minutes), delivering a song that has a nice flow and allows Ledisi to sport her spunk while establishing her style. `Knockin' is another track that is beautifully executed and really corrals all that makes Ledisi special (notice, I really like her as an artist and enjoy what she brings to the table, despite my issues with the overall package). Take southern rock, gospel, Motown and R&B and you have `Knockin'. `Trippin' has a totally different vibe to it, so laid back and infectiously slinky. I love the sensuality evoked here, because it is so refined and almost arrogant, without being repulsive. It drips with confidence.

Simply stunning.

Sadly, after the stunning opener (my appetite was totally wet), the album drops drastically with the dull and uneventful `Everything Changes'. The next few tracks (`Turn Me Loose', `Higher Than This' and `Alone') keep with that dull drag. These are the tracks that simply grow tiresome, which is sad because some have major promise. I love the vibe of `Alone', but the song repeats that word far too much, to the point where I'm completely done with the song before its even half way through. `Higher Than This' is possibly the most repetitive track on the album (it's also the longest, so go figure).

The album then takes a nice turn for the good, thrusting itself in a string of effective tracks (marred by one misstep, but we'll get there in a minute). `Love Never Changes' has a beautiful melody that brings the listener to a beautiful place. `Please Stay' capitalizes on the spunk Ledisi brings to the table. `Goin Thru Changes' has a nice R&B (throwback) vibe that suits Ledisi's vocals beautifully, and `I Need Love' has underlying layers of modern hip-hop that take it to another place, separate from the album. These tracks don't reach the brilliance of `Knockin' or `Trippin', but they strike a nice balance and prove to be provocative and exciting.

`The Answer to Why' is completely different than anything on the album, and while I appreciate Ledisi's attempt at something so different for her, it almost sounds like a Disney song, and not one of the better ones.

But, the worst thing here is, by far, `Say No'. Lyrically, vocally, structurally; it's just a total mess. I actually loathe this song, completely. That's never a good thing, but this song angers me.

In the end, I like Ledisi overall and feel compelled to check out her other albums. I hear she likes to `change', so she may prove to be someone I constantly go to for new flavor. She has the chops (her voice is outstanding at times) and I like that she obviously has a viewpoint and style, and that's always important in an industry that constantly churns out the same ol' same over and over again. Ledisi stand out. Sadly, I cannot completely give myself to this album. For me, this is an easy C+ album, but judging by some of the more stellar tracks, this could have been an easy A+ had she done some much needed fine tuning.

If you're interested, I'd rank the album like so...

1) Runnin'
2) Trippin'
3) Knockin'
4) Them Changes
5) I Need Love
6) Please Stay
7) Love Never Changes
8) Goin' Thu Changes
9) Alone
10) The Answer to Why
11) Turn Me Loose
12) Higher Than This
13) Everything Changes
14) Say No
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Turn Me Loose
Turn Me Loose by Ledisi (Audio CD - 2009)
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